Request for Proposals are now open for the Fire Protection Research Foundation (FPRF) research project to study Performance Criteria for Aircraft Hangar Fire Protection Systems. NFPA 409, Standard on Aircraft Hangars, requires various fire protection options using firefighting foam systems. The existing requirements for foam fire protection systems currently in NFPA 409 (e.g., low expansion, high expansion) are largely based on large-scale fire tests (~900 sq. ft. pool fire tests) conducted in the 1970's, however it is a challenge to replicate these large scale pool fire tests today.
Currently, there is no avenue for evaluating alternative fire protection methods for possible inclusion in NFPA 409. While systems such as water mist, compressed air foam, clean agents and other solutions have been proposed, the path to understand their effectiveness in protecting an aircraft hangar is unclear. Therefore, it is necessary to develop an alternative evaluation method that can be used to assess the performance of other technologies on the assumed aircraft hangar fire scenario (a large jet fuel pool fire).
The specific goal of this project is to determine the baseline performance criteria of existing fire protection systems in aircraft hangar facilities. The objectives include:
- Reviewing and clarifying the technical basis of the performance criteria of fire protection systems currently permitted in NFPA 409;
- Conducting a risk assessment of aircraft hangar facilities and evaluating the applicability of alternate fire protection technologies;
- Developing a research plan to further investigate the effectiveness of fire protection solutions in aircraft hangars.